@dognolegs. Completion of contract old chap?
AT&T reached an agreement with Deutsche Telekom and signed on the dotted line. Part of such agreements is a fee to be paid by the one party if the other party "fails to complete". For reasons for which DT cannot be held liable AT&T has withdrawn from their agreement thus making them liable for the $4bn fee, the size of which was stipulated as part of the original agreement. AT&T on this occasion is just having to pay up for their own misjudgement in betting that they would succeed in scamming something close to recreating the old Bell monopoly past the competition authorities in the US. They fucked up and they are having to pay for it.